Suspects arrested after campus thefts
By Andrea Lamberti
A robber broke into Burton House and stole a wallet from an occupied room early last Sunday morning. Minutes before, the intruder had broken into Random Hall and stolen a wallet there, according to Campus Police Chief Anne P. Glavin.
Soon after the intruder left Burton House, a Campus Police officer stopped him on the Harvard Bridge and arrested him after Brenda S. Zuehlke '91 identified him as the robber who broke into her Burton House room. He was arrested on charges of breaking and entering, and robbery.
Earlier at Random Hall the intruder had "kicked in a back door" to break into the building, Random Hall resident Heidi J. Macus '90 said. He stole one wallet while he was there, at about 3:40 am Sunday morning, Glavin said.
The Campus Police did not encounter the suspect at Random Hall, but CPs did find two wallets there, one belonging to a Random Hall resident, the other to a Boston University student. While the officers were at Random, the Campus Police received a phone call of a burglary in progress at Burton House.
The description of the suspect in the Burton incident was almost identical to the suspect in the Random incident, Glavin said. The Campus Police put the "description on the air," she said, and a several officers went over to Burton House to investigate.
Soon afterwards, another MIT Campus Police officer saw "a person on the [Harvard] Bridge that fit the description of the person described in Burton," Glavin said, and the officer stopped the individual and "told [him] that he matched the description of someone who had committed a crime in the area."
At that point, two other officers arrived at the scene with Zeuhlke, and she identified the suspect as the person who had stolen her wallet. The Campus Police arrested him and took him to the Cambridge Police Station.
Robber walked into
occupied dorm room
Zuehlke said she was awakened by noises in the hallway outside her fourth floor room. She "heard a door open, but ... never heard it close," she said, and realized then that someone had entered her room.
He said, "all I want is your wallet" several times. He then took Zeuhlke's wallet, which was on the desk, she said.
"There was a very strong stench to him," Zeuhlke said. He was also "bleeding profusely," Zeuhlke said, probably from kicking the door in at Random Hall. "There was blood all over the elevator, and all over my door," she said.
Zeuhlke called the Campus Police immediately after the intruder left the room. She gave them a description of a black man wearing a long green jacket over jeans and a grey sweatshirt. While she was talking to the Campus Police, she looked out her window and saw the robber leaving the dormitory and heading toward Memorial Drive.
"I don't know how he got into the dormitory," Zeuhlke said. She speculated that "someone who was probably leaving" the dormitory let him in.
The Burton House night watchman later found Zeuhlke's wallet on a back stairway in the dormitory. Everything was in place except for $25 in cash. The Campus Police also found the stolen Random Hall wallet while at Burton House.
Zeuhlke said that the suspect had reportedly "hit four Boston University dorms" before breaking into Random Hall and then Burton House. She also said that he was supposedly a "career criminal, [and that] he only hits college dorms."
Zeuhlke received a telephone call from the Cambridge District Attorney's office yesterday, and the victim-witness advocate informed her that the suspect had not met bail. A court date will be scheduled soon, Zeuhlke said.
By Katherine Shim
The Undergraduate Association Council last night decided against placing a student activities fee referendum on the March 14 election ballot, but did pass a proposal emphasizing the basic need for a student activities fee that would appear as a "line item" on tuition and room and board accounts.
The decision to table the referendum effectively kills efforts by the administration of UA President Paul L. Antico '91 to have a student activities fee take effect with the freshman class entering in the fall of 1991?, said Antico in an interview after the meeting.
The UA refused to put the fee to student vote until a more detailed plan for implementation was developed. Problems remain with the activities fee, council members argued. More time was needed to determine how the UA Finance Board will allocate funds to specific committees; to investigate the exact sources of present funding; and to specify the precise fee to be asked of each student, council members felt.
A committee consisting of members of FinBoard, other students, and faculty will be formed to look into these issues, said Antico?.
But the UAC reaffirmed its support for the idea of an activities fee, adopting a resolution stressing the importance of increased funding for student activities. The resolution, sponsored by council member David L. Atkins Jr `90, put forth a working plan which would place a $30 per semester fee on each student's term bill as a line item. Currently, student activities receive approximately $7 per term per student from the Office of the Dean for Student Affairs.
The basic need for a student activities fee is undisputed, Atkins said. He pointed to a two-decade decline in real dollars being provided to activities and the lack of any formal mechanism by which activity funding is indexed to inflation.
However, Atkins, citing a lack of enthusiastic support by the student body, feared that the referendum would fail. A similar referendum in the spring 1988 UA elections was voted down by the student body.
Atkins echoed the general feeling of the council that more time was needed to work out problems in the plan and campaign for greater student support of the fee. Council members voiced concern that if the activity fee plan failed once again, credibility of both the plan and the UA would be lost completely.
A representative from the Student Information Processing Board verbalized dislike for the plan. "If I were to vote on the activity fee question right now, I would not vote in favor [of] it," he said. "Frankly, I don't trust FinBoard.... I would like to see some system of checks and balances worked out in the system of allocation of funds before I, as an activity member, would be comfortable with the plan," he added.
Antico had expressed hope that the plan would immediately be made a referendum issue on the March ballot. "Activities need more money, and it is a fact that the administration simply will not pass more money to fund activities," he said. "Enough research had already been done. The time to act should have been with a March 14 referendum."
After the meeting, Antico, acknowledging disappointment with the council's decision, said, "Students won't have a chance to decide, one way or the other, how their own money is spent."
While stalling the activity fee question, the UA considered and approved three new referenda.
One referendum focuses on the presidential search process and asks students whether they believe student representatives should be involved in the search process.
Another ballot question assesses student opinion on the effects of flushing during Residence/Orientation Week. A proposal for changes to the Institute calendar is also be addressed in a referendum.